Landscape externalities from onshore wind power
The expansion of renewable energy is a central element of the German Federal Government's climate and energy policy. The target for 2020 is to produce 30% of the electricity from renewable energies. Wind power has been selected to be a major contributor to this change. Replacing old wind turbines by modern ones and building new turbines on land will be crucial in meeting this target. However, the expansion of onshore wind power is not universally accepted. In several regions of Germany residents are protesting against setting up new wind turbines. To determine the negative effects two choice experiments were applied in Westsachsen and Nordhessen, Germany. In both regions the externalities of wind power generation until 2020 based on today's state of technology were measured. The results show that negative landscape externalities would result from expanding wind power generation. Using latent class models three different groups of respondents experiencing different degrees of externalities were identified.
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